Jelle Klaasen

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Jelle Klaasen
Jelle Klaasen.jpg
Personal information
Nickname The Cobra
Born (1984-10-17) 17 October 1984 (age 30)
Alphen, Netherlands
Home town Breda
Darts information
Playing darts since 2003
Darts Grand Slam Darts 'The Cobra' 23g
Laterality Right-handed
Walk-on music Can't Stop Me by Afrojack ft. Shermanology
Organisation (see split in darts)
BDO 2004–2007
PDC 2007–
Current world ranking 30
BDO majors - best performances
World Ch'ship Winner 2006
World Masters Last 128: 2006
World Darts Trophy Last 16: 2007
Int. Darts League Last 16 Group: 2006
Zuiderduin Masters Last 24 group: 2005
PDC premier events - best performances
World Ch'ship Quarter-finals: 2009
World Matchplay Quarter-finals: 2010
World Grand Prix Last 32: 2013
Grand Slam Quarter-finals: 2007
Premier League 7th: 2009
Desert Classic Last 16: 2008, 2009
European Ch'ship Semi-finals: 2009
UK Open Last 16: 2008, 2013
US Open/WSoD Semi-finals: 2010
Players Ch'ship Finals Last 16: 2010, 2013, 2014
Other tournament wins
Bousema Open 2014
Halstern Open 2010
Killarney Pro Tour 2007
Open Noord Nederland 2007
Ranking Tuesday Open 2010
Texel Darts Trophy 2011
Westerlaan Open 2010
Other achievements
2009 - Nine dart finish at the Champions League of Darts

Jelle Klaasen (born 17 October 1984) is a Dutch professional darts player who plays in the Professional Darts Corporation and is the youngest darts player to win the World Darts Championship. His nickname is The Cobra. He lives in Breda, North Brabant, Netherlands. He is an ethnic Indonesian.[citation needed]

World Championship performances[edit]

On 15 January 2006, he became the youngest World Darts Champion, aged 21 years 90 days, when he defeated fellow Dutchman Raymond van Barneveld in the final of the 2006 BDO World Championship by 7 sets to 5. He also beat Shaun Greatbatch and world number one Mervyn King on his way to the final. Before the championship, he was said to be a 100-1 outsider to win the title as he did not even have a BDO Tour ranking.

Klaasen returned to the Lakeside to defend his World title at the 2007 Championship. Klaasen was unseeded for the event after a poor run of form and was facing the seeded Co Stompé, with eventual winner Martin Adams waiting in round two should he win.

Klaasen became the sixth defending champion to fall at the first hurdle in his title defence with his first round loss to fellow countryman Stompé by three sets to nil.[1] Although Klaasen was lower in the rankings at the time, it was considered an upset as Stompé had not won at the Lakeside in the previous four years.

The day after the final it was announced that Klaasen would be defecting to the rival Professional Darts Corporation, alongside two fellow countrymen, Michael van Gerwen and Vincent van der Voort.[2] The BDO planned to take legal action as Jelle had a year left on his contract.[3]

BDO Grand Slam events[edit]

His first attempt at the Winmau World Masters in 2005 ended with a 2-3 defeat to Irishman Steve McDonald. In 2006 he was seeded 13 but suffered a straight sets defeat in his first match against fellow Dutchman Mario Robbe.

As World Champion, he was invited to the 2006 World Darts Trophy in his home country, but lost 0-3 to Tony Eccles in the first round. In 2007 he won in the first round 3-1 against reigning PDC world champion van Barneveld, shortly after that he lost in the second round to Andy Hamilton.

He also played in the 2006 International Darts League and beat 13-times World Champion Phil Taylor 7-6 in his last group match, but it was not enough to qualify for the knockout stages. He beat Andy Fordham and Dick van Dijk but lost to Adams, Greatbatch and Colin Lloyd in his other group matches.

PDC career[edit]

Klaasen did not make an immediate impact on the PDC circuit, having to start virtually from scratch at 262 in the world rankings. He competed at most of the Pro Tour events (Players Championships and UK Open Regional Finals) to improve his ranking. He reached the quarter-finals of two non-televised Pro Tour events before winning a Players Championship - the John McEvoy Gold Dart Classic in November which saw him climb to 49 in the Order of Merit. He only made it into one televised PDC event in the UK during 2007 (the UK Open where he reached the last 32) but his form towards the end of the year ensured automatic qualification for the 2008 World Championship - his debut in the PDC version. He lost in the first round to fellow Dutchman van der Voort in a sudden death leg, having missed ten darts to win the match.

He defeated Lloyd, Jan van der Rassel and Hamilton to reach the quarter finals of the 2009 PDC World Championship, only dropping one set in the process. In the quarter finals, he was beaten by van Barneveld 5-1. The match is best remembered for Barneveld hitting the first 9-dart leg in the history of the PDC World Championship.

In January 2009, Klaasen was chosen as one of the two wildcards for the 2009 Premier League Darts tournament, where he will compete against Taylor, James Wade, van Barneveld, John Part, Terry Jenkins, King and the other wildcard Wayne Mardle.

Klaasen found life hard in the Premier League, losing 5 and drawing 2 of his opening 7 matches. On 26 March, Klaasen defeated Terry Jenkins 8-6 to finally record his first victory in the competition. Klaasen finished 7th in the Premier League after Wayne Mardle withdrew from the competition. Klaasen qualified for the World Matchplay in Blackpool but lost 10-8 to Ronnie Baxter in the first round.

Klaasen lost in the first round of the 2010 World Championship losing 3-1 to Welshman Barrie Bates. He then reached the quarter finals of the 2010 World Matchplay, beating Mervyn King and Gary Anderson before losing to Simon Whitlock.

Klaasen reached the second round of the 2012 World Championship with a 3–1 win over Peter Wright, but was beaten 0–4 by James Wade in the second round.[4] His best result of 2012 was in reaching the quarter-finals of the third UK Open Qualifier in March where he lost 4–6 to Mark Jones.[5] At the UK Open itself he was defeated in the last 64 by Raymond van Barneveld 3–9.[6] After revelations emerged with regard to Klaasen's personal life detailed below he did not play again in the rest of 2012, which included missing the 2013 World Championship.[5]

Klaasen returned to darts in January 2013 by qualifying for the first European Tour event of the year, the UK Darts Masters, with a 6–2 win over Carlos Rodríguez.[7] He lost to Michael van Gerwen 5–6 in the first round.[8] In May, Klaasen reached his first PDC final since November 2007 at the fourth Players Championship by beating the likes of Mervyn King and Gary Anderson. He averaged 103 in the final against Jamie Caven but lost 4–6 with his opponent averaging almost 111.[9] At the UK Open he beat Gareth Pass, Ross Smith and Stuart Kellett to reach the last 16 for the first time since 2008.[10] Klaasen played Ronnie Baxter and lost 7–9.[11] He beat Wes Newton 6–4 and Justin Pipe 10–6 to advance to the quarter-finals of the European Championship, where he was defeated 7–10 by Michael van Gerwen.[12] In the first round of the World Matchplay he came back from 3–8 down against Simon Whitlock to trail only 7–9, but lost the next leg to fall short of a successful fightback.[13] Klaasen was outplayed by Gary Anderson in the first round of the World Grand Prix as the Scotsman did not give Klaasen one dart at a leg winning double in a 2–0 in sets ten minute match. In the double-start event Anderson averaged 104.86, almost 40 points ahead of Klaasen's 67.22.[14] Klaasen knocked out number two seed Dave Chisnall 6–4 in the Players Championship Finals, before losing 9–5 to Anderson in the second round.[15]

Klaasen played Jamie Caven in the first round of the 2014 World Championship and lost 3–1 as he hit just 17% of his darts at doubles.[16] At the German Darts Championship he reached the semi-finals of a European Tour event for the first time by defeating Michael van Gerwen 6–5 in the quarters. He played Justin Pipe and was denied a place in the final as Pipe took out a 134 finish in the deciding leg.[17] Klaasen was narrowly beaten 9–8 by Andy Hamilton in the third round of the UK Open.[18] At the European Championship, Klaasen knocked out reigning champion Adrian Lewis 6–4 in the first round and Caven 10–7 to reach the quarter-finals for the second year in a row, where he lost 10–5 to Mervyn King.[19] Klaasen averaged 108.74 in beating James Wade 6–4 in the first round of the Players Championship Finals, but then averaged nearly 20 points lower as he missed 22 doubles in the next round against Dean Winstanley to be beaten 10–5.[20][21]

World Championship results[edit]



Other tournaments[edit]

Klaasen has won some Open events in his native country including the Alkmaar Open, but has yet to clinch a major BDO/WDF Open event. In March 2006 he was runner-up in the Finnish Open, losing in the final to Martin Atkins by 6 sets to 2. He also reached the quarter-finals of the Swiss Open and Denmark Open during 2006.

He also won the Killarney Darts Festival in 2007, where he beat Vincent van der Voort 3-2.

Recent controversy[edit]

In August 2012, Klaasen was accused of sending naked photo messages to a mentally disabled 15 year old family friend, which he has admitted to in the Dutch press.[22]

Later that year, on the 13th of December, he was sentenced to 16 hours of community service and a fine of 400 euros, to be paid to the disabled girl.[23]

Outside darts[edit]

Before the 2006 World Championships, Klaasen worked for a manpower agency in the Netherlands but he has now taken up darts full-time. He is sponsored by Keukenconcurrent - a company that produces fitted kitchens in his home country.


  1. ^ Champion Klaasen upset by Stompe BBC report on 1st round defeat 2007
  2. ^ BBC SPORT | Other Sport... | Darts | Dutch trio defect to PDC circuit
  3. ^ BBC SPORT | Other Sport... | Darts | Klaasen threatened over PDC move
  4. ^ "2012 PDC World Championship Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  5. ^ a b "Jelle Klaasen 2012". Darts Database. Archived from the original on 13 January 2013. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  6. ^ "2012 UK Open Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  7. ^ "2013 PDC UK Masters European Qualifier Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 25 February 2013. 
  8. ^ "UK Masters - Friday Updates". PDC. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  9. ^ "Brilliant Double For Caven". PDC. Retrieved 26 May 2013. 
  10. ^ "2013 UK Open Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  11. ^ "Speedy Services UK Open - Fifth Round". PDC. Retrieved 9 June 2013. 
  12. ^ " Euro Champs QFs". PDC. Retrieved 7 July 2013. 
  13. ^ "BetVictor World Matchplay Night One". PDC. 21 July 2013. 
  14. ^ " World Grand Prix Day One". PDC. Retrieved 8 December 2013. 
  15. ^ "2013 Players Championship Finals Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 8 December 2013. 
  16. ^ "Ladbrokes World Championship Day Three". PDC. 15 December 2013. 
  17. ^ "Anderson Edges Pipe For German Win". PDC. Retrieved 2 February 2014. 
  18. ^ "Coral UK Open - Friday Evening". PDC. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  19. ^ "2014 European Championship Results". Darts Database. Retrieved 7 December 2014. 
  20. ^ "Cash Converters PCF Day One". PDC. Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  21. ^ "Cash Converters PCF Day Two". PDC. Retrieved 29 November 2014. 
  22. ^ "Darts scandal: Former world champ Klaasen's career in jeopardy over indecent photo allegations". Daily Mirror. Retrieved 6 September 2012. 
  23. ^ "". Retrieved 13 December 2012. 

External links[edit]